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Buffalo lawmakers approve benefits for same-sex partners

OUTspoken For Equality President Kitty Lambert
WBFO News file photo
OUTspoken For Equality President Kitty Lambert

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – Same Sex partner benefits were approved by the Buffalo Common Council Tuesday. If the Mayor signs the bill, same sex couples who work for the City are eligible.

Click the audio player above to hear Eileen Buckley's full story now or use your podcasting software to download it to your computer or iPod.

City lawmakers agreed to a compromise on the bill. It calls to exclude opposite sex domestic partners from receiving the benefits because they would be eligible by getting married.

The amended bill would require same-sex partners to share a common residence for at least six months. The bill was sponsored by Council Members David Rivera and Michael LoCurto.

The only no vote was cast by Masten District lawmaker Demone Smith. He wanted the bill to include a wording that stated if gay marriage is legalized in the state, then the same-sex benefits would no longer apply. The bill now heads to the Mayor for his approval.